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The Aging Voice

How does age affect the singing voice? Let's just assume for the sake of the argument that one is taking care of one's voice. Obviously, if one isn't, the voice deteriorates anyway. I've heard of opera singers who change classifications in their thirties and beyond, both male and female. This is especially true for basses. I've also read of pop/rock stars who have had to retrain because of changes in their voices. Lzzy Hale is an example: http://lzzyhaleofficial.tumblr.com/post/127637611086/1st-entry-lzzy-20

I'm a male entering my mid-thirties, and I haven't noticed a change in my range (both lower and upper) or timbre. But I've heard from many voice teachers that both males and females can have a second "voice-puberty" at my age.

Comments

  • 7 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • highmtnhighmtn Posts: 10,432Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro
    I think it's safe to say that age affects everyone, but to different degrees. Some people take better care of their bodies, and some are in better shape physically, to begin with. Some refuse to let society's views on aging deter them from moving ahead with their vocal goals.

    As long as you keep the resilience (flexibility) in your cords, you will do better than if you allow your cords to lose their resilience. Continually stretching the cords and keeping them hydrated is going to promote resilience. Regular workouts will promote agility.

    You will hit plateaus through your life where it seems like you are going backwards or at least not moving forward. That's usually a personal issue, and once you work past it, it's back again to progress. It has been said that age does make it harder to maintain a broad vocal range. That means that as you age, you will need to work harder at remaining flexible, to prevent stalling when you hit those obstacles.

    Like your ealier puberty, you can live through any "second puberty" (if it even happens) and go on about your merry way, continuing to sing after manuevering through any curves life may throw at you.

    Lzzy Hale is looking at her issues as a new start, and looking forward to expanding her range further. Interesting article about Lzzy. She has a good outlook on continuing her career.

    Bob
  • @highmtn your comment sent me to Google and thought I'd post this article for anyone interested on Lzzy Hale's story.

    http://lzzyhaleofficial.tumblr.com/post/127637611086/1st-entry-lzzy-20

    On a related note, Izzy isn't the first famous rock vocalist I've heard sing the praises of Ron Anderson. Chris Cornell and Chris Daughtry, both favorites of mine, are also on the list. I read in Ken's sort of auto biography of himself as a singer that he took from Ron for several years and didn't gain much.

    I'm not sure how to ask this in a classy way, but... I'd love to know thoughts about what it might be about Ron Anderson that has garnered him so much celebrity praise. Is it just that a lot of these rock singers had lousy technique and any vocal coach that half knew what they were talking about would have changed these singers' lives?
  • highmtnhighmtn Posts: 10,432Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro
    Ron was actually the one coach that Ken learned more from than many of the others. Ron's method is very close to Bel Canto.

    There aren't that many vocal coaches that can really help rock singers to sing in a healthy way and really shine with their voices. Ron is one that has helped a lot of prominent rockers and big pop stars, as well, to find their way.

    Ken takes exception now to some of the things he was taught by Ron, but on the other hand, he learned a lot of good things from Ron, as well.
  • neil501nycneil501nyc Posts: 5Enrolled
    edited February 18 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Remember, what you may lose in agility, flexibility, and range as you age, can be offset to a great extent by good technique and experience. And, as the vocal coach Melissa Cross always reminded students, "It's not all about range."
  • Just now seeing this @highmtn ! Thank you for your response!

    One of the things that sold me so easily on KTVA was that Ken had soooooooo many explanations and demonstrations of what he teaches. I could find other programs with glowing reviews (such as Ron's)... but no content or demos!
  • wow, that is very cool that she would post that. i read through it. that must have been very discuraging to go through that.
  • There's a few things that singers must keep in mind as they age. I'm working on a book about singinv and worship for a couple of years and briefly this is what I've come up with so far on this topic.

    1. All human beings, unless they have a genetic disorder, when they get to be about 30 years of age, our bodies start changing our muscle tissue into fat deposits. Your breath support system is muscular, so if you don't practice regularly, you willstart hearing negative results.

    2. Depending on your genetic heritage, as you age through your late forties, your body begins to turn 'your cartilage into bone. The larynx is mostly all cartilage,so you'll have to work even more consistently i.e. practice to keep it flexible and strong.

    3. Males hav a really hard time of singrng oi when
  • Whoops! Anyway when young men's voices change in puberty,its a very difficult thing and lots of fellas stop singing. Women's big vocal changes happen during menopause and combined with #1 & #2,it can really change how you sound and even how your singing feels to you. Very difficult to go through, especially when no one ever talks about it - it can come as a complete surprise. A quite unpleasant one at that. So what can you do? For no. 1, make sure you are engaging your diaphragm enough while you are practicing...to the pointof fatigue. You have to keep on pushing yourself a bit so that you can retain what you have. Improvement requires even more work. Justlike fitness guru Tracey Anderson says, everyday that you don't workout, you're losing ground. For no. 2, you cannot fight your genes, but you can take excellent nutritional care of yourself and stay well hydrated. Continuing your daiy vocal practice will help and do try to change things up every now and again. Your body gets used to whatever you do all the tme.That's all for?now. Xxxooo

    Helen
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